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Russell McVeagh advises on significant solar farm project

Home Insights Russell McVeagh advises on significant solar farm project

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Published on: January 23, 2024


Russell McVeagh is pleased to have advised a joint venture between Genesis Energy and FRV Australia on the development and project financing of the 63 MW Lauriston solar farm which has now achieved financial close. 
Our team, which included experts from our corporate, project finance, property and construction teams, supported Genesis Energy and FRV throughout the project. This included the establishment of the joint venture, the project debt financing and the construction, operations, offtake and other project documents. The project's offtake arrangement is underpinned by a 10-year power purchase agreement with Genesis Energy, in respect of 100% of the renewable energy from the project. This follows on from Russell McVeagh advising the joint venture on the acquisition of the Lauriston solar project from HES.
This is the largest solar farm in Aotearoa New Zealand to reach financial close and generation is expected to commence late this year. The original capacity was estimated at 52 MW but through engineering optimisation has been increased to 63 MW.
Located one hour’s drive from Christchurch, the solar farm is on a 93-hectare site and, once operational, will generate enough electricity to power the equivalent of nearly 13,000 houses.
Genesis Energy and FRV Australia formed a joint venture in late 2021 to develop up to 500 MW of solar capacity over five years. This is expected to generate about 750 GWh pa – enough to power 100,000 households or 185,000 EVs per year.
The project financing is provided by Bank of New Zealand and MUFG Bank Ltd.  White & Case and Chapman Tripp advised the lenders.
The joint venture has selected BEON to carry out the construction of the project, with initial works already underway.
You can read more about this market-leading project here.

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